Unabridged Chick

I'm Audra, a 30-something married lesbian. I love interesting heroines, gorgeous prose, place as character, and the occasional werewolf.

Most interesting when deviating from Shakespeare...

Juliet's Nurse: A Novel - Lois Leveen

Full review. What I loved most about this novel was Leveen's sensitive look at the emotional implications of being a wetnurse.  Angelica has just lost her child when she's given infant Juliet; it's no wonder she fell in love with the needy infant she nurtured.  But that relationship is fraught, for Angelica is not Juliet's mother, and her connection with the child she loves is dependent on whether her employers still value her.

 

The first half of the novel is devoted to this, which surprised me but was the best part of the novel.  Once the story shifted into Shakespeare's tragedy, the story was less gripping -- of course the nurse is stricken and sad, and of course she's devoted -- and since we know what's going to happen to Juliet, it was just about sitting back and letting the bus drive.

 

As a look at medieval life for a domestic, this was really fascinating. Shakespeare loyalists shouldn't mind this imagining, and those who might be unfamiliar with Romeo & Juliet will be able to enjoy the story just fine.